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Mercat de Sant Antoni

An iron palace for produce and books

Mercat Sant Antoni

In the old days, C/ Sant Antoni led to the gate that linked Barcelona to the rest of Spain, making it the scene of grand entrances and royal processions. Where the gate once stood, the Mercat di Sant Antoni now fills an entire square of the Eixample.

Designed in 1882 by Antoni Rovira i Trias (author of the losing entry for the Eixample plan), this cathedral of spuds and carrots remains one of Barcelona’s most impressive iron structures, shaped like an giant X with four long naves extending crossways to each chamfered corner. Much of the original decoration, restrained by Barcelona standards, is intact. A few stands, notably the poultryman Aviram Joana, have beautiful Modernista wrought iron and coloured glass.

After being closed for years, Sant Antoni's thorough renovation has been going on for years, and now is complete. The original decorative bits were carefully restored, and the building now looks much as it did when it was new.

It isn't just for food; there are also clothing stands, and on Sundays a big flea market (Encants) along C/Urgell with books, stamps, coins and textiles.

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C/Comte Urgell 1

Carrer del Comte d'Urgell, 1

Hours Mon-Thurs 7am-2.30pm, 5-8.30pm. Fri, Sat and days before holidays 7am-8.30pm. Sun market 8.30am-2.30pm

metro: St Antoni

+34 934 26 35 21

+34 93 209 31 58

Text © Dana Facaros and Michael Pauls

Image by Oh Barcelona